Mayor Lee Brand released the following statement after hearing that California Lieutenant Governor and 2018 gubernatorial candidate Gavin Newsom was in Fresno for a California State Lands Commission meeting and remarked about the lack of support at the meeting for the Palm and Nees Avenues access proposal to the San Joaquin River Parkway, which is also known as Alternative 5B.:
“I am disappointed that the Lt. Governor came to Fresno to learn about this important community issue but didn’t give me, the City or the affected parties sufficient notice about the time or nature of the meeting. I’m also disappointed that he and the State Lands Commission chose to insert themselves in our local decision-making process without soliciting and hearing all sides of the story. Neither Mr. Newsom nor anyone else on the Commission consulted with us about possible solutions we’re working on that could provide access at both locations.
“As the former Mayor of San Francisco, I would hope Mr. Newsom would appreciate that important local issues such as access to the San Joaquin River Parkway are complex and multi-faceted. One of the major hallmarks of my administration has been strengthening relationships with all of our local, state and federal partners, and seeking a way forward that brings everyone to the table to find a just and equitable solution. I hope to develop the same collaborative relationship with Mr. Newsom, both in his current role as the state’s lieutenant governor and in any future endeavors he may pursue.
“In the meantime, I would ask Mr. Newsom and his fellow State Lands Commission members to reconsider the decision they made yesterday.”